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Options For Trailer Brakes That Can Engage While Backing Downhill


we often have to reverse downhill with loaded trailers . no problem with electric brakes as they work in all directions have one unit with hydraulic system which locks out for reverse so no brakes then . is there a workaround or should we convert to electric ?


Helpful Expert Reply:

To be able to apply the brakes on your trailer while backing downhill, I recommend converting your trailer from hydraulic brakes to electric brakes. There is no way to engage a surge coupler for your hydraulic brakes while you are backing downhill.

The parts needed to convert your trailer to electric brakes are brake assemblies, hub and drums compatible with electric brakes, trailer wiring, and a breakaway kit. I have attached a help article on adding electric brakes to a trailer for you.

The hub and drum assemblies and brake assemblies will need to be matched to your trailer axle. The bearings, seals, and races used by the hub and drum will need to match the existing components on your trailer. The brake assembly will need to match the size drum and axle's weight capacity. If you would like to let me know the inner and outer bearing numbers, grease seal number, wheel bolt pattern, and axle capacity, I will be happy to make a hub and drum and brake assembly recommendation for you. I have attached the product listings for both of these components.

To wire your trailer for electric brakes, I recommend using the Trailer Wiring 7-Way Upgrade Kit # e99011 to provide you with a 7-way connector and electric connections. To run wire to the electric brakes, I recommend # 12-2-1, which is sold by the foot. You will also want 12-10 gauge butt connectors to make the wiring connections # DW05745-10.

To add a breakaway kit to your trailer, I recommend the Pro Series Push to Test Breakaway Kit with Premium Integrated Charger # 50-85-315.

If your existing electric brake controller is a time-delayed controller, it will work well for you when backing downhill. If your brake controller is proportional, you will likely need to use the manual override when backing downhill.

There is an option to be able to apply the trailer brakes while backing downhill while keeping your hydraulic brakes. Though you will keep the hydraulic brakes, it will be even more of an investment. If you are interested in converting your trailer to electric over hydraulic brakes, let me know and I will be happy to go over the process with you.

helpful expert reply by:
Victoria B

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